Tuesday, December 23, 2008

South LA Development Problems

This Buckingham Place building in South L.A. is more than 90% finished but has been vacant for nearly a year. The Community Redevelopment Agency provided $8.5 million for the project. The city can’t hire another firm to complete the work because the site is tied up in bankruptcy court. Community leaders call the 71-unit apartment building an eyesore.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Jessica Alba - Coach Cares

Please visit the Coach Cares Website to find out how to get some amazing gifts and give to YMC at the same time

December Mentor Tips


By Youth Mentoring Connection

A series of helpful hints for mentors


Coming up in this issue:

Scenario: What would you do? Situations you may encounter with your mentee

Things To Do: Things to do with your mentee

Inspiration: Selected quote(s)

What would you do?


Q: What are the guidelines for giving a gift to my mentee?

It is certainly okay to give your mentee a modest gift for the holidays, or for his/her birthday. However, please keep in mind that when you give of yourself (your time, energy and caring) you offer the greatest gift of all.

For material gifting, here are some things to consider:

1. Keep it simple and inexpensive. When your gift is too extravagant you risk being seen as a source for material goods, which changes the nature of the relationship.

2. Gifts that say, “I’m thinking of you” or “I really value this relationship” are the best. Some examples would be a framed photo of you and your mentee at an activity; or something relevant to what you’ve been discussing together, such as a book on careers, or a sports book, or something simple related to your culture.

3. A good alternative to a material gift would be to take your mentee someplace special.

4. Do not give your mentee a gift that his/her family could not afford.

5. Never give your mentee a gift in the presence of other mentor/mentee pairs. Some students may receive gifts and others might not, which creates problems at school and resentful students. This may also put other mentors in a difficult position.

6. If you are part of a work-site mentoring program your company may decide to give a gift to each of the students participating in the program. That’s okay, because it is seen as coming from the organization, and doesn’t impinge on your individual relationship. It is still recommended that the gifts be modest.

7. If you know that your mentee has a real need for something you can provide, but doesn’t fit into the parameters above, you may want to find a creative way for the mentee to earn it or ‘win’ it from the program. This challenges you to examine your motives, because you don’t get to be the generous ‘Santa’. It is the program that is giving the gift and not you. We believe that in the long run this will serve you, your mentee, and her family better.

Again, we want our youth to understand that the purpose of having a mentor is not to receive cool gifts, but to develop a friendship with a caring adult.


“Give whatever you give with love. Then even the tiniest pebble you offer will have great meaning. Its fruit will come back to you a thousand fold, because it is not the pebble that you give, it is love.”

- Gurumayi

Our sincerest Holiday Wishes to our favorite class of people:
Those that give of themselves so children may be better off. Thank you mentors!

How can we help? If you have any questions/concerns regarding your
relationship with your mentee, please feel free to email them to us at

check out whats happening in LA during the Holidays

Youth Mentoring Connection

1818 S Western Avenue, Ste 505

Los Angeles, CA 90006

Ph: (323) 731-8080 Fax: (323) 731-9090

Friday, December 19, 2008

Odyssey & Middle School Holiday Party

The Yabo's Holiday

HBO Holiday Party

WB Holiday Party

Fresh Food Shortage

It can be hard to improve the health of a community if there is little in the way of fresh food available. This article in the Associated Press highlights one woman's efforts to help her mother lose weight.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Lincoln Holiday Party

Holiday Gift Idea

Dear Friend,
If you are like me, the holidays are both a joy and a pain. I don’t have to explain the first, but the pain comes from finding just the right gift for your family or friends. You want it to be special and meaningful but let’s face it—how many Caribbean cruises can you afford to give?

Don’t fret. I’ve got a great idea.

Make a contribution to YMC in the name of your friend or family member and we’ll send them a specially designed charitable gift card . We’ll be able to help more youth—and you’ll get a tax deduction. Talk about a win/win situation. To sweeten the pot, the Frieda C. Fox Foundation will make a two to one match of gifts of $100 to $500. So, your $100 gift is worth $300 to YMC.

Whatever holiday gifts you chose to give, I want to personally thank you for the gifts you bring to us. Working with us to make sure our youth have an opportunity to give THEIR gifts to the world is so important. I know it takes time, patience and love. Thank you for sharing all of that and more with us and our kids.

Click here if you are ready to make a donation


Tony LoRe

Founder and President

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Study: South LA Residents Shortchanged on Healthcare Options

An article online at FOx LA talking about the lack of Health services for residents in South LA.

Rhino Holiday Party

Racial Profiling and the LAPD

Policing the diverse communities of Los Angeles has been a challenge for many reasons. One of the greatest barriers to the Community trusting the Police has been the perception that some Policing decisions have been racially motivated. A recent study be the ACLU looked at this issue in greater depth making some interesting recommendations.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Adams Family Night

Removing Guns

The BBC have been looking at the rise of Guns being handed in as part of an exchange program in South LA, and suggesting some of the reasons behind it.

An interesting gang puishment

The LA Times reports on a new Initiative by the City Attorney to reduce Gang Leaders benefit from illegal activities, even targeting those already in prison. The money gained from this is to benefit the Communities that have been blighted by the drugs and violence.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008


Lincoln Family Night

Monday, November 24, 2008

Digital Youth Project: Final Report

Over three years, University of California, Irvine researcher and her research team interviewed over 800 youth and young adults and conducted over 5000 hours of online observations as part of the most extensive U.S. study of youth digital media use to date.

They found that social network sites, online games, video-sharing sites, and gadgets such as iPods and mobile phones are now fixtures of youth culture. The research finds today’s youth may be coming of age and struggling for autonomy and identity amid new worlds for communication, friendship, play, and self-expression.

Many adults worry that children are wasting time online, texting, or playing video games. The researchers explain why youth find these activities compelling and important. The digital world is creating new opportunities for youth to grapple with social norms, explore interests, develop technical skills, and experiment with new forms of self-expression. These activities have captured teens’ attention because they provide avenues for extending social worlds, self-directed learning, and independence.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Christmas Shopping

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Friday, November 14, 2008

Obama win stirs hope in tough South Los Angeles

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Former gang member Herbert Brown had few positive choices as a young black man growing up in the tough streets of South Central Los Angeles.
"You could be a football player, a basketball player, a Crip or a Blood, though maybe that's changed," he said, holding up a T-shirt emblazoned with an image of President-elect Barack Obama at his store.

continue reading...

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Warner Bros Getting to know you


New charter school

A major expansion of the Charter School Program was given a boost today when a new $2.1 million contract to get 2000 College Grads from South LA by 2020. The question as always with Charter Schools is as well as increasing the proportion of local young people graduating from College will it also help the percentages completing high school, or improve the literacy rate?

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Adams Matching Bingo

Thursday, November 6, 2008

LA for the Canadians

Sometimes living in the thick of things we forget what is going all around us, and sometimes its only by looking at the opinions of those elsewhere do we get a timely reminder..

Political outcomes

One of the many problems that we face in the light of the last few days is to figure out what the implications of the many props are. The LA Times looks at what the implications of one of the Props was on transport and some of the new challenges it provides for the people of South LA.

HBO Human Bingo

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Lincoln - Introduction to the Community

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Odyssey "Thats Nothing"

Rhino Matching Bingo

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Want to experience some of the Retreat?

Hear the beats of our young men drumming at the Retreat.

Click to hear music file

A quick slideshow from our Retreat

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Teen Athlete's Killing Lamented in Ice Cube Video

In our modern society where does the line between entertainment and real life begin and end. By featuring the family of Jamiel Shaw the LA High School Football Player who was killed earlier this year is Ice Cube educating young people about the problem or is he using the tragedy that a family suffered for entertainment?

Warner Bros Bingo

Lincoln Matching Bingo

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Taking Action

Along with all the stories about the struggles that people in South Central face on a daily basis there are many untold stories of people survival and triumph. Lifehacker talks here about what you can do to make a difference, something that we help mentors do every day. They also have another interesting article on Attacking Poverty through Literacy, something to make us think...

The Relative successes of Charter School

At a time when many of our young people are attending Charter Schools this report from the Wall Street Journal makes interesting reading. What is doesn't discuss is what the impact taking many of the most able students and most engaged parents away from their local Public Schools?

Monday, October 13, 2008

11-year-old boy is one of two shot dead near L.A. Convention Center

It is a sad Indictment of our society and community when it takes the death of an 11 year to make the story of two people being shot and killed newsworthy. Also while these tragedies occur all over LA this one happened minutes away from our office

Monday, October 6, 2008

WB Chaos Bowling

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Complex Life

Tookie Williams was certainly a controversial figure in life and in death. This review of his memoirs touches on the question of how much his upbringing in South Central affected him. And the question for us is how much the violence that exists in South Central today will impact on future generations?

The impact of Peacejam

Here's some more coverage about Peacejam, the International Conference on Peace that our young people took part in recently

How Gang violence impacts High School Football

It is tragic when one of the LA Times lead stories is about how two High School Football Teams are each playing without a player that had been killed through Gang Violence. Sad too that the article finishes talking about the need for increased security at LA Unified High School Football Games. But this is the reality in the Community that our young people face, and why now more than ever we need to provide more resources and more places for young people to be safe, away from the deadly streets.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Shout! Factory Closure

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Middle School Poetry

Peacejam - What our amazing young people thought of the experience!!!

I would like to start by saying that participating in Peace Jam was one of the best experiences I ever had. Participating in the service learning project was the best part of the whole experience. Not only did this experience help me get closer to my peers but I saw how every single one of us learned really valuable organizing skills. This experience helped me figure out a hidden part of me. Through the learning service project we provided to our community I was able to take an important role in one of the workshops. By being one the facilitators in the poetry workshop I was able to communicate the importance of words through poetry and at the same time I was able to share my experience with people from different backgrounds. I got to admit that at first I was scare and I doubted myself. I didn’t know if I would be able to facilitate the workshop in front of 20 people four times through out the day. But I did it with the support of all my peers. There is nothing that I would change about how my peers and I facilitated the service learning project. But there is something I would have loved to seen different. I got to admit I was a bit disappointed about the fact that no noble peace winner at our location. We worked really hard to achieve our goal and a lot of the inspiration we got it from many of the noble peace winners.
I am very thankful I was able to assist the conference because I feel I was exposed to issues around the world that I had no idea were happening. As a conscious individual I always feel like there is so much to do towards improving people’s lives but at times I don’t know how to approach certain issues. Being part of the conference definitely helped me see how all these noble peace winners deal with the issues affecting their countries and how powerful they are as human beings. I was really inspired about the work these people do this is why some of my peers and I decided that every time we meet we will donated a dollar to a cause affecting people. We still have a lot to do but by doing this we feel we can start helping someone. Hearing the noble peace winners speak and the time spend withy my peers is something that I would not trade for anything. But if I could change something from the conference I would definitely change the food. I just feel we spend really long days and the food was not enough to nourish our bodies. I also feel that the family groups could have been more interactive. I felt like I got stuck with a bunch of grownups and the conversations were dried. Overall the conference was great and the whole experience irreplaceable.

Griselda Diaz

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Charities, donors, advisers turn to planned giving

Rachel sent us in a great article about how Planned Giving is becoming more prominent on the Philanthropic Landscape

Rhino Bowling

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Lincoln Bowling 08

Monday, September 29, 2008

No To Proposition 6

Monday, September 22, 2008

Shout people 1

Posted by ShoZu


Posted by ShoZu

Sunday, September 21, 2008

New mentors

Posted by ShoZu

Friday, September 19, 2008

Happy Happy Hoolie Day

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Oprah's Feelgood Factor

Here's a great article Rachel came across entitled

Definitely makes interesting reading about the impact giving to others can have,


Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Boarding House Mentors

Odyssey Year End Celebration Picnic 2008

No Name

Interesting piece about the renaming of South Central.
The LA Times discusses the repercussion on the identity of an area of our community that was told it had to change what it called itself to the more generic South LA!!!

Monday, September 15, 2008


27082008244, originally uploaded by paddyfaetheprovince.

Its going to be all the rage this Fall......

Peacejam Prep

10092008264, originally uploaded by paddyfaetheprovince.

Some last minute preparation for the young facilitators for the Peacejam Conference

Hands across the sea

09092008261, originally uploaded by paddyfaetheprovince.

A poorly lit vision of 40 youth from Belfast and South Central playing the classic YMC game of back to back

Tales From Norn Iron

Last week saw the culmination of lots of hard work by a group of our young people. After building up to it for several months 8 of our youth ran workshops for young people for all over the world as part of the Peacejam Youth Conference.

The whole event was a great success with over 150 young people visiting us in South Central to engage in stories of challenge and inspiration.

Also this week we got to host a group of 10 young people and staff from Belfast (see the photograph above). They were last seen surfing at Will Rogers Beach yesterday and the rumor is that one of the group, Charlene, is a sure bet for the Irish Surfing Team....

Middle School Chaos part 2

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Middle School Chaos Bowling

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Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Monday, May 12, 2008

flickr slidr

Created with Admarket's flickrSLiDR.

View Youth Of LA in a larger map

View Youth Of LA in a larger map

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Give Youth A Chance